These 5 Reasons Could Explain Why Your Child Is Not Getting Taller

Joanna Marie O. Santos
September 20, 2023

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It’s only natural for us moms to worry about the health of our kids. Watching them grow up is a beautiful and challenging journey filled with moments of pride as well as worry. This is especially true for first-time moms! It’s normal to wonder if our kids are growing up at the same rate as their peers since it is not only a good sign of healthy growth, but it’s also a sign that they are properly nourished and without any serious medical issues. 


Parents can become attentive to their child’s physical development. After all, watching them grow bigger and outgrow their baby clothes is a significant milestone for both the child and the parent. However, when it seems like the child is obviously behind in development from their peers, it can be a cause for concern. Genetics plays a huge role in the growth of a child, but there are also other factors that can stunt their development. Whether it’s nutrition or their environment, it is important for parents to identify what might be causing a child’s slow growth, if it is actually slow at all. In this article, we will discuss 5 reasons why your child may appear to be behind in their physical development. 


What Are The Normal Child Physical Development Milestones?


As mentioned, genetics play a huge role in the growth of a child. The parent’s genetic dispositions will all influence the child’s weight and height as they grow older. Physical development, while it is known to commonly refer to growth and motor development, also considers the kid’s brain development. Moreover, your child’s growth will also depend on their sex. Below are “normal” physical development milestones.


  • From 0 to 12 months, the child will grow an average of 10 inches. 

  • From 1 to 2 years, the child will grow about 5 inches.

  • From 2 to 3 years old, the child will grow an average of 3 and a half inches a year.

  • From 3 years old until they hit puberty, the child will grow about 2 inches on average per year. 


5 Reasons Why Your Child Is Not Getting Taller


1. You’re Not Encouraging A Healthy, Balanced Diet


Image from Raising Children


One reason why your child appears to be growing slower than their peers is because they are not getting enough nourishment. Some parents might not be aware of their child’s malnutrition, which is why it is important to always ensure that your child is always getting enough veggies and fruits on their plate, as well as other important food groups that contain all the nutrients to support healthy growth. 


2. Your Kids Are Not Active Enough


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A sedentary lifestyle could be the cause of why your kid appears to have a slower development than you expect. Encourage your child to play outside with their friends or arrange a playground time with them yourself. According to an article published by Raising Children, sufficient outdoor activities are important not just for your child to develop strong, healthy bones and muscles, but can also be beneficial for their cognitive and social skills. 


3. Your Child Is Under Severe Constant Stress


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Being exposed to constant stress can have negative effects on the child’s biology. Extreme pressure and stress can affect their hormones, especially at a very young age, which can then lead to poor brain and physical development. As parents, it is important to prevent your child from being exposed to too much stress to ensure that they will grow up mentally and physically sound. 


4. Your Kid Has Too Much Screen Time


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In relation to a lack of physical activity, too much screen time can affect your kid’s brain development. Video games and watching movies is not a bad activity, but just like many other things, it should be done in moderation. Make sure that your child will have a healthy balance of physical and mental activities to promote healthy physical development.


5. An Underlying Medical Condition


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Not all children grow up at the same rate, and some kids will experience a slower physical development compared to their peers. While there may be cases where the cause is not known, or a constitutional growth delay is at play, it is still important to seek medical help if you think that something else might be causing your child to experience slow growth. Underlying medical conditions may be causing your kid to grow up slower than other kids and it is important for the cause to be identified in case it may be deferring something more serious than your child’s height.


Happy Kid, Happy Home


A child’s growth is influenced by a lot of factors other than genetics. However, it is still important for parents and caregivers to provide the necessary nutrition and a stress-free environment to make sure that no external factors can have a negative impact on the child’s life. For parents, seeing their children happy is the best reward, which is why allowing them to lead a healthy life, physically and mentally, is a holistic approach to securing a happy life with the entire family.